Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Saturday laid the foundation stone for a Rs182.3 billion project to provide water to independent power producers (IPPs) committed to generating 1,650MW at Block-1 of Thar coalfields.
Speaking on the occasion, the chief minister said that the project has been launched under the public-private partnership (PPP) mode by attracting foreign direct investment (FDI).
The ceremony was organized at Nabirsar near Umerkot and was attended by Sindh Minister for Energy Imtiaz Shaikh, Education Minister Syed Sardar Shah, Minister for Irrigation Jam Khan Shoro, MNAs Mir Munawar Talpur, Dr. Mahesh Malani, Special Assistant to the CM on Investment Syed Qasim Naveed, Kuwait Consul General Salim Yusif Al Hamdan, CEO of Kuwaiti Company Enter Tech Holding Company Abdulla Al Mutairi, Enertech Water Private CEO Ltd Yasser Malik, Pakistan Kuwait Investment Company Chairman Mohammad Al Fares, Chinese experts working on the project and local notables.
The Sindh government was looking for investment to launch the project, the CM said, adding that a canal was required to be constructed from the Farsh X-regulator to Nabisar for the discharge of 200 cusecs.
He said that 45 cusecs would be supplied to IPPs and the remaining 155 cusecs would be provided to Nabirsar for agriculture purposes.
The CM said that considering the significant cost of project, the Sindh cabinet had decided to undertake the project through the PPP mode.
Shah went on to say that a Kuwaiti investment company, M/s Enertech Water Pvt Ltd had submitted a proposal. “Finally, the concession agreement was signed on June 26 2021,” he said.
According to the project document, the Kuwaiti company is responsible for constructing a 60.7km pipeline of 45 cusecs capacity from Nabisar to Vajihar along with the construction of two reservoirs with a capacity of 45 and 30 days at Nabisar and Vajihar, respectively.
“The reservoir capacity has been enhanced to incorporate evaporation loss. Under the contract, the private partner has to establish a 4.8MW power generation system for 48 cusecs pumping stations. There would be two pumping stations with a maximum capacity of 60 cusecs.
“A water treatment system of 51 cusecs would also be established comprising flocculation/clarification and filtration to attain the required water quality as has been proposed.”
The project is expected to generate revenue of Rs35 billion and it would be completed in one year. Replying to a question, the chief minister said that his government has raised the issue of the “unjust distribution” of water with the federal government.
To a question about giving the top positions of administrators of the KMC and Hyderabad to the MQM-P, the CM said that talks between his government and the MQM-P were in progress. He added that a meeting for the purpose was held the other day. The outcome of the meeting will be shared with the media, the chief minister maintained. Shah said that the agreement inked with the MQM-P was an open document and nothing has been kept secret.
In his address, Sindh Energy Minister Imtiaz Shaikh lauded the efforts of the chief minister to materialize the project. He added that 8MTs of coal would be excavated from Thar Block-I for generation of 1,650 MW.
Addressing the ceremony, Irrigation Minister Jam Khan Shoro said that the people of Nabirsar have long been demanding a water scheme. “Today, the PPP government is meeting the demand by constructing a canal from Makhi regulator to Baisar so that the local people can use it for drinking and agricultural purposes,” he said.
Forest Minister Taimur Khan Talpur said that under the guidance of the PPP leadership, the Sindh government has not only served the people of Sindh but contributed to national flagship projects. He appreciated the vision of the party leadership. Kuwait’s Enter Tech Holding Company CEO Abdulla Al Mutairi said that he was keen to further strengthen partnership with the Sindh government by bringing in more investment. Appreciating the Sindh chief minister, Muttairi said, “He [CM] is the man of his words. Whatever commitment he made with us has been fulfilled in time.”